Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki, Part I

(Taiheiki eiyű den, 太平記英勇傳)

Publisher: Yamamoto-ya Heikichi

c. 1848-1849


The Taiheiki was written in the late fourteenth century and recounts a series of wars between the Northern Court of Ashikaga Takauji in Kyoto, and the Southern Court of Emperor Go-Daigo in Yoshino.á However, this series of prints portrays characters from the civil wars of the sixteenth century, with the participantĺs names altered.á Most of the prints bear numbers within circles.á They are each about 14 by 10 inches (36 by 25 centimeters), a size known as ˘ban.á Complete translations of the texts on the prints may be found in Heroes of the Grand Pacification: Kuniyoshiĺs Taiheiki eiyū den by Elena Varshavskaya (2006, Hotei Publishing, Amsterdam, 2006).á



Robinson: S62.1

Number: 43

Description: Kozaemon Hisamitsu (合郷基左エ門久盈) mounted and armored, but bareheaded, on his galloping steed

Historical character: Haig˘ Gozaemon Hisamitsu




Robinson: S62.2

Number: 34

Description: Akashi Ridayű Hidemoto (明石理太夫秀基), with a straw raincoat over his armor, and armed with a hoe

Historical character: Akashi Gidayű Tadamasu




Robinson: S62.3

Number: 19

Description: Amanaka Shikanosuke Yukimori (尼中鹿之助幸盛), fully armored and carrying a jűmonji spear

Historical character: Yamanaka Shikanosuke Yukimori


NOTE: The illustrated example is from an unnumbered edition




Robinson: S62.4

Number: 27

Description: Aragi Settsu no Kami Murashige (荒儀攝津守村重), in full court dress, eating mochi (rice buns) from the point of the sword of the unseen Nobunaga

Historical character: Araki Setsu-no kami Murashige




Another state of the above design


Robinson: S62.5

Number: 7 ()

Description: Asai Bizen no Kami Nakamasa (阿左井備前守中政) armored and seated on a tiger-skin stool, inspecting a severed head

Historical character: Asai Nagamasa




Robinson: S62.6

Number: 8 ()

Description: Asakura Saemon-no-tayű Yoshikane (淺久良左エ門太夫義兼) standing, armored except for sode (sleeve) and helmet, cutting off the end of his waistband

Historical character: Asakura Saemonnokami Yoshikage




Robinson: S62.7

Number: 3 ()

Description: Chibata Shuri-no-shin Tatsuie (千場田修理進辰家) grasping his spear, with which he has just broken the water-jars to induce his men to make a sally while besieged in the castle of Ch˘k˘ji

Historical character: Shibata Shurinosuke Katsuie


NOTE: The illustrated example is from an unnumbered edition


Painting after the above print



Robinson: S62.8

Number: 22

Description: Fujiwara no Masakiyo (藤原正清) in full armor seated on a camp-stool on the shore in Korea, with two Koreans at his feet

Historical character: Kat˘ Kiyomasa




Robinson: S62.9

Number: 15

Description: Fukishima Masamori (吹嶋政守) in armor, struggling with three assailants

Historical character: Fukushima Masanori




Robinson: S62.10

Number: This design exists with the number 31 and also with the number 33

Description: Hamaji Sh˘gen Mitsukuni (濱地将監満國), armored but without helmet, cutting a blossoming branch with his sword

Historical character: Yamaji Sh˘gen Masakuni




Robinson: S62.11

Number: 35

Description: Hayashi Tanshir˘ Taketoshi (林丹四郎武俊), armored but without helmet, in his last battle at Uchide-no-hama in 1582

Historical character: Hayashi Hanshir˘ Taketoshi



Another state of the above design



Robinson: S62.12

Number: 44

Description: Hida Magobei Masatoshi (比田孫兵衛正俊), in armor but without helmet, in battle against the Chinese in Korea

Historical character: Kida Magobee Muneharu




Robinson: S62.13

Number: 17

Description: Hori Ran Maru Nagayasu (保理蘭丸永保), in court robes, having just knocked off the court cap of Takachi Michihide with his fan

Historical character: Mori Ranmaru Nagasada




Another state of the above design


Robinson: S62.14

Number: 45

Description: Horimoto Gigayű Takatoshi (堀本儀太夫高利) standing in full armor holding his spear

Historical character: Morimoto Gidayű Hidetora


Robinson: S62.15

Number: 2 ()

Description: Inagawa Jibu-no-tayű Minamoto no Yoshimoto (稲川治部太夫源義基) in full armor, seated on a camp stool by a fence

Historical character: Imagawa Yoshimoto




Another state of the above design from an unnumbered edition


Robinson: S62.16

Number: 47

Description: Ina-ue Daikur˘ Masatada (稲上大九郎正忠) in armor without a helmet, firing a small cannon

Historical character: Inoue Daikur˘ Nagayoshi





Another state of the above design in which the skull on the sashimono is grey


Robinson: S62.17

Number: This design exists with the number 27 and also with the number 37

Description: Ishikawa S˘suke Sadatomo (石川荘助貞和) at the Battle of Shizu-ga-mine in 1583

Historical character: Ishikawa Hy˘suke Kazumitsu




Robinson: S62.18

Number: 10 ()

Description: Isono Tamba no Kami Sadamasa (井曽野丹波守貞正) seated on a camp stool holding a spear

Historical character: Isono Tanba-no kami Kazumasa




Another state of the above design


ôRobinsonö refers to listing in Kuniyoshi: The Warrior-Prints by Basil William Robinson (Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY, 1982) and its privately published supplement.á